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Ill scoop the 2018 HERcury Prize for ‘We Are Ill’

illManchester’s DIY punks Ill have scooped the 2018 HERcury Prize for their debut album We Are Ill! Check it out on Bandcamp:

The prize was announced in a glittering ceremony in Cassie Fox’s kitchen via Facebook Live. News of a Loud Women event in London with Ill coming soon …

Ill accepted the prize via satellite link-up:

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LOUD WOMEN announces the 2018 HERcury Prize shortlist

LOUD WOMEN’s 2018 HERcury prize shortlist is a bakers’ dozen (whittled down from 30) of albums released between July 2017 and July 2018 by British-based, (self-identified) female, female-fronted and female-driven bands. Votes cast by Team LOUD WOMEN. Not much crossover here, you’ll notice, with lesser, so-called music prizes.
Winner to be announced 21 September via Facebook Live!

Without further ado, our shortlist, in alphabetical order:

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1) Argonaut – Argonaut Forever (November 2017)

“Raw and fragile and urgent in all the best ways,” to quote Loud Women’s review; Argonaut’s third album presented last year’s new material and revisited key tracks from their first two albums, serving as a liminal release before the unveiling of their revamped band line-up for 2018.

2) Bratakus – Target Grrrl (August 2017)

Probably the best Scottish sibling bass ‘n’ drum grunge album since, well, The Twistettes’ LP the year before, Bratakus are just one of many Caledonian bands rocking Loud Women’s world right now. Short sharp punk soundbites and catchy-as-hell chant-a-longs on this well-received debut, like a charmingly-gnarly hybrid of The Exploited and The Distillers.

3) Chvrches – Love is Dead (May 2018)

No inverse snobbery around these parts: Chvrches’ third Top 10 album has one firm foot in 21st Century stadium pop and the other in 80s electro, and Loud Women love it like we love our Taylor Swift and Yazoo albums. Lyrics like ‘Graves’ hint at political bite beneath the glossy perfect-pop sheen.

4) Crumbs – Mind Yr Manners (July 2017)

Debut album from this Leeds-based ‘funk post-punk disco pop party pack’ fourpiece. They’ve got the stripped-down, melodic tunes, they’ve got the best song titles (‘Stockport Syndrome’, ‘Ciggy Stardust’) and they’ve got a place in the 2018 Loud Women Fest line-up!

Surely in itself reason enough to get tickets.

5) Dream Wife – Dream Wife (January 2018)

Much-loved, tune-packed debut from this Brighton-based pop-punk trio. Unmistakably Icelandic vocals atop an irresistible noughties-new wave sound that recalls the likes of CSS and New Young Pony Club.

6) Goat Girl – Goat Girl (April 2018)

A deserved Top 30 chart placing rewarded Goat Girl’s eponymous debut, an unexpected delight of an album from a young, all-female group sounding wise beyond their years and uncategorisable to the genre-fixated. The band traverses a range of moods across 19 song-sketches held together by a deceptively lazy-hazy vocal. Did that song really recommend several methods for literally executing the Tory government? Yes. Yes it did.

7) ILL – We Are ILL (May 2018)

“A perfect storm of enigma, whimsy and controlled violence,” according to our reviewer, ILL’s debut album has only been blowing minds for two months, yet already feels somehow like it’s always existed. A genre-straddling state-of-the-nation address, with added bear growls.

8) LIINES – Stop-Start (May 2018)

‘Long-awaited’ might be a cliche, but in the case of LIINES‘ debut album, it’s a fitting description for a band that’s evolved steadily from fin-de-siecle Manc post-riot grrrl stalwarts Hooker. The tightest, heaviest rhythm section in DIY supports Zoe McVeigh’s emotional vocals and haiku-like songwriting, together conjuring an atmosphere of taut, claustrophobic menace like a UK postpunk time capsule.

9) Nervous Twitch – I Won’t Hide (November 2017)

“Catchy lo-fi garage pop” says our reviewer, and it’s the third album in only as many years from this DIY Leeds trio. One of three albums in the shortlist from Cardiff’s Odd Box Records, Nervous Twitch present 14 tracks of surfy guitar and Headcoatees-esque vocals, with a 60s girl group influence.

10) Rainbow Reservoir – Channel Hanna (February 2018)

Perfect indie-punk-power-pop with clear riot grrrl influences from this Oxford trio, fronted by Connecticut native Angela Space. The title track tells you everything you need to know, but there’s not a bad song on Rainbow Reservoir’s varied and entertaining debut.

11) Shopping – The Official Body (January 2018)

DIY queercore supergroup-success-story Shopping show no signs of running out of credit (yeah we went there) on their third album in five years. With Edwyn Collins back in the producers’ chair, the pace is faster, the bass is heavier, Rachel Aggs’ vocals have a newly-won confidence and their ability to paint propulsive-yet-plaintive pictures (ref. ‘Asking for a Friend’) is in full effect.

12) Sink Ya Teeth – Sink Ya Teeth (June 2018)

A perfect ten tracks of no wave-disco electropop on the brilliant debut album from this Norwich duo. And omg that *is* Gemma from KaitO!

13) Suggested Friends – Suggested Friends (November 2017)

Soundbites like “instantly catchy guitar work”, “strong singalong chorus” and “lush harmonies” litter our review of this self-titled debut from Suggested Friends. Something of a supergroup featuring members of Standard Fare, Chorusgirl and Wolf Girl, the band brings some of the sensibilities of those groups to this record, mixed with 80s/90s influences and an epic quality unusual for the DIY indiepop scene.

Runners-Up

Brix & the Extricated – Part 2
Charismatic Megafauna – Semi-Regular
Colour Me Wednesday – Counting Pennies in the Afterlife
Days Fade, Nights Grow – Amelioration
The Duke Spirit – Sky is Mine
DuckFaceache
Gwenno – Le Kov
Kate Nash – Yesterday is Forever
The Kut – Valley of Thorns
Ramonas – First World Problems
REWSPyro
Runt – Positions of Power
The Selecter – Daylight
Nadine Shah – Holiday Destination
Table Scraps – Autonomy
Wolf Alice – Visions of a Life
You Want Fox – Reverse the Curse

The Menstrual Cramps scoop Hercury Prize for debut album

DIY newcomers The Menstrual Cramps have scooped the coveted LOUD WOMEN Hercury Music Prize for their debut album, ‘We’re Not Overyacting’.

 

The riot grrrl trio topped the shortlist, which included other much celebrated female artists such as Actual Crimes, Desperate Journalist, The Empty Page, Honeyblood, Nolay, Oh!Gunquit, Pet Crow, Petrol Girls, Sacred Paws, The Tuts, and The Wharves.

Emilia from The Menstrual Cramps issued the following statement on her Facebook page:

“WHO GIVES A FUCKKKK ABOUT THE MERCURY PRIZE WHEN WE HAVE JUST WON THE HERCURY PRIZE AWARD!!!! 🥇👸🏽👑🍾🥂🏆 THANKS SOOOOO MUCH TO CASSIE AND THE LOUD WOMEN TEAM, WHO BELIEVED IN US FROM DAY ONE, LET US PLAY OUR FIRST EVER GIG WITH THEM ON INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY EARLIER THIS YEAR AND HAVE CONTINUED TO BE OUR NUMBER ONE SUPPORTERS, WE FULLY LOVE AND RESPECT YOU AND EVERYTHING YOU DO FOR WOMEN IN MUSIC 💕 HUUUUGE CONGRATS TO ALL THE OTHER INCREDIBLE NOMINEES, YOU ALL FUCKING ROCK AND WE ADORE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU!!! KEEP ROCKING AND MAKING NOISE GALS 🔥🔥🔥🤘🏽🤘🏽🔥🔥🔥⭐️⚡️💥☄️💫 NOW LETS ALL GET DRUNKKKKK N CELEBRATE 🎉🎉😭😭😭💕

The prize was announced by LOUD WOMEN founder Cassie Fox, in a Facebook-Live ceremony co-hosted by her cat, Ernie. He’s 22, you know.

LOUD WOMEN ‘Her’cury Music prize Shortlist announced

For this – the very first LOUD WOMEN ‘Her’cury Music Award – we’ve honoured most of the criteria of our rival, the so-called “Mercury” prize: that is, albums by British-based musicians released between 30th July 2016 and 21st July 2017 (sorry to Deux Furieuses and Crumbs, respectively).

With TWO differences: our ‘Her’cury prize doesn’t care about record formats or industry distribution, and these artists are all LOUD, all female-fronted or female-driven, or just plain all-female. From a pool of thirty options, our scientific poll of the LOUD WOMEN Team has produced this shortlist of 12, given below in alphabetical order.The winner of the ‘Her’cury Music Award will be announced at lunchtime on Thursday 14 September.

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Actu
al Crimes – ‘Ceramic Cat Traces

Swansong album from Kirsty (Cat Apostrophe) Fife, Aaron Batley and Ruth Mair. Tense post-hardcore melodies in the music and subtle political undertones in the words, topped with the prolific perzine-ster’s borderline-breakdown vocals.

 

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Desperate Journalist – ‘Grow Up’

Second album from the runaway success story of the London indie scene, pushing all your Britpop/postpunk/pop-goth/80s-indie buttons at once. Soaring vocals, chiming guitars, proper songs and all’s right/wrong with the world.

 

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The Empty Page – ‘Unfolding’


Powerful debut from female-fronted Manc pop-grunge alt-rockers, who contributed key track ‘Deeply Unlovable’ to LOUD WOMEN’s debut compilation album. 

 

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Honeyblood – ‘Babes Never Die’

Brilliant hook-laden grunge pop from this Glasgow duo, with every song a winner; proving that the ‘difficult second album’ is just a problem for other people.

51s5ccRZ0dL._SS500The Menstrual Cramps – ‘We’re Not Ovaryacting’

The Menstruals (well, we can’t really nickname them ‘The Cramps’) hit the ground running earlier this year with this impressive digital debut and a ridiculously-confident live debut on International Womens’ Day for Who Runs the World/LOUD WOMEN.

Nolay-1Nolay – ‘This Woman’

Latest album from the Unorthodox Daughter, and impossible to number because so many of Nolay’s releases have been mixtapes straight from the underground. No pop-grime crossover, no compromise, and no holds barred. Nolay’s definitive feminist statement.

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Oh! Gunquit – ‘Lightning Likes Me’

Second album from criminally-underrated, slightly-uncategorisable (although we’re about to have a go), new-wave surf-garage trash-punks!

 

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Pet Crow – A Simple Guide to Small and Medium Pond Life

Impressively-tuneful debut album from Derby male/female 4-piece, released on vinyl by LIINES’ label Reckless Yes. Dancey, surfy, garagey indie punk fronted by Danielle Cotterill’s powerful vocals.
https://petcrow.bandcamp.com/releases

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Petrol Girls – ‘Talk of Violence’

Debut full-length release from probably the most powerful feminist band in the UK, known to leave audiences genuinely shocked-and-awed with a combination of rock hooks, hardcore assault and uncompromising lyrics. One of two shortlisted bands with a track on the LOUD WOMEN Volume One compilation album.

resizeSacred Paws – ‘Strike a Match’

Definitive musical statement from Rachel Aggs (Trash Kit, Golden Grrrls, Covergirl, Shopping) – possibly the UK’s greatest guitarist – combining what used to be called ‘world music’ with Postcard Records-esque post-punk funk. Scottish Album of the Year, and now LOUD WOMEN ‘Her’cury shortlist!

a4192287913_16The Tuts – ‘Update Your Brain’ 

Widely-acclaimed and long-awaited debut from one of the hardest-working DIY bands in the business, released a decade after they first formed at school. Standout newer tracks ‘Con Man’ and ‘1982’ bring the best punk-pop hooks and ‘Give Us Something Worth Voting For’ delivers the clearest message.

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The Wharves – ‘Electa’

Second album from this all-female melodic post-everything powerhouse follows 2014’s ‘At Bay’, showcasing more of their tightly rhythmic and skilfully harmonic repertoire. https://gringorecords.bandcamp.com/album/electa

 

Runners up

¡Ay Carmela! – ‘Working Weeks’
Bamboo – ‘Live at Café Oto’
Deerful – ‘Peach’
Ex People – ‘Bird’
The Franklys – ‘Are You Listening?’
Feature – ‘Banishing Ritual’
Hands Off Gretel – ‘Burn the Beauty Queen’
Kamikaze Girls – ‘Seafoam’
Little Simz – ‘Stillness in Wonderland’

Grace Petrie – ‘Heart First Aid Kit’

Porridge Radio – ‘Rice, Pasta and Other Fillers’
Rattle – ‘Rattle’
Ravioli Me Away – ‘Living is a Myth’
Skinny Girl Diet – ‘Heavyflow’
Slowcoaches – ‘Nothing Gives’
Teen Canteen – ‘Say It All With a Kiss’
Kate Tempest – ‘Let Them Eat Chaos’
Young Romance – ‘Another’s Blood’

 

The winner will be announced at lunchtime on Thursday 14 September.
All enquiries to loudwomenclub@gmail.com

www.loudwomen.org